Presentation on theme: "The role of integration in strengthening democracy: the Andean case Building Democracy across Borders Conference organized by IDEA International Ambassador."— Presentation transcript:
The role of integration in strengthening democracy: the Andean case Building Democracy across Borders Conference organized by IDEA International Ambassador Allan Wagner Secretary General of the Andean Community Stockholm, June 10, 2005
Table of contents 1.Democracy in Latin America and the Andean countries unique characteristics 2. The complexity of democratic transitions 3. A new democratic State 4. Democracy and Integration 5. AGORA: A new democratic initiative
Democracy in Latin America and the Andean countries unique characteristics -Troubling weakness of democracy in the region. -In the past 15 years alone, ten Latin American presidents have been unable to complete their terms of office (seven of them in the Andean subregion). -The crisis of representation and representativity is more serious in the Andean countries. -The Andean subregion has greater cultural diversity, as reflected in the existence of minorities and native peoples. -Over one-half of the Andean population lives below the poverty line and the subregion has one of the highest rates of unequal income distribution.
Democracy in Latin America and the Andean countries unique characteristics -It is society on the move that undertakes to put an end to democratically elected governments. -The crises are being resolved by constitutional means. -The governments of the Latin American countries are chosen through electoral processes that comply with internationally accepted requirements and standards. -There is no unease about democracy, but there is unease within democracy.
The complexity of democratic transitions -The return to the rule of law and respect for our freedoms and for human rights are key aspects of the transition process. -Transitions are processes with a dual movement: a movement involving a change in system (from an authoritarian to a democratic system) and a movement changing the rules by which state activity and society are organized. -It could be said that there is a third level of change: the change in social order (from an unjust to a just order).
A new democratic state Eight reforms to improve governability, promote democracy and enhance governance: 1.Give politics back its key position. 2.Discuss the characteristics of the new democratic State that Latin America and the Andean subregion need. 3.Reduce the social gap. 4.Build a citizens democracy based on more and better rights for all. 5.Design a series of reforms to improve democratic institutions. 6.Openly fight corruption in both State and society. 7.Put into practice a model of comprehensive development with competitiveness and social inclusion. 8.Develop a policy based on consensus-building.
Democracy and integration Some milestones: -Riobamba Code of Conduct: …respect for human, political, economic and social rights is a fundamental rule of internal conduct of the Andean Group States … (September 1980). -Joint Caracas Declaration: …the existence of democratic regimes in all the Member countries makes it possible to advance the Subregions integration on legal bases … ( -February 1989). -Andean Community Commitment to Democracy Protocol: democracy is made a prerequisite for membership in the Andean Community (1999).
Democracy and integration Concrete actions: -The Andean Community is currently collaborating in the democratic transition process being advanced by the new Ecuadorian government. -In Bolivia, the Andean Community is developing a cooperation program to improve the countrys economic performance and strengthen its governability. -The Integrated Social Development Plan (ISDP): common integrated development strategies and regional projects to fight poverty, social exclusion and inequality.
AGORA: A new democratic initiative -AGORA Democrática: project created by IDEA and Perus Asociación Civil Transparencia, and cosponsored by the Andean Community, the Inter-American Development Bank and the United Nations Development Program. -It conducts seminars and targeted activities in the Andean subregion aimed at encouraging a discussion of the political processes, strengthening the links among democratic parties and promoting the reform of the political systems in the Andean countries. -Efforts are currently underway to set up a roundtable of Andean political parties and a andean mechanism to reinforce the culture of dialogue and democratic coordination through an exchange of experiences among various political and social actors.
IDEA and the CAN -Building an integrated and democratic world order capable of promoting and safeguarding respect for human rights, together with a decent life for all citizens is a task in which we must all join. -The Andean Community joints IDEA International in this endeavour.